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The Observatory of European SMEs was established by the Commission in December 1992 in order to improve the monitoring of the economic performance of SMEs in Europe. Its task is to provide information on SMEs to policy-makers, researchers, economists and SMEs themselves. The Observatory today consists of a series of reports on SME-related issues that are published on a non-regular basis. The research is carried out by ENSR (the European Network for SME Research), co-ordinated by EIM Business & Policy Research in the Netherlands. The reports rely also on a survey conducted among over 7600 SMEs in Europe.

This brochure presents some highlights from the reports published in 2002 and submitted to the Enterprise Directorate-General of the European Commission. The reports cover the 18 countries of the European Economic Area (EU-15 plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) and Switzerland.

The following 2002 Observatory reports are available on-line at: :

- Report 2002 / No. 1: Highlights from the 2001 Survey
- Report 2002 / No. 2: SMEs in Europe, including a first glance at EU candidate countries
- Report 2002 / No. 3: Regional clusters in Europe
- Report 2002 / No. 4: European SMEs and Social and Environmental Responsibility
- Report 2002 / No. 5: Business demography in Europe
- Report 2002 / No. 6: High-tech SMEs in Europe
- Report 2002 / No. 7: Recruitment of employees: Administrative burdens on SMEs in Europe
- Report 2002 / No. 8: Highlights from the 2002 Survey

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